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Tamil Nadu girl battles poverty to reach for the stars, wins trip to NASA

The Class 11 student, who draws inspiration from nuclear scientist and former Indian President APJ Abdul Kalam, studies at a Tamil medium government high school and learnt English by taking coaching classes for a month.

December 17, 2019 / 05:01 PM IST

Visiting the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) in the United States and interacting with the astronauts there is the kind of dreams that the likes of K Jayalakshmi do not dare to dream.

The Class 11 government school student, who is in her late teens, takes care of her mentally challenged mother and younger brother. She does not have a father and is the sole breadwinner of her family.

Her days are busy. Jayalakshmi shuffles education and work at this tender age, selling cashew nuts and giving tuition to Class 8 and 9 students to make ends meet.

The science student, who draws inspiration from nuclear scientist and former Indian President APJ Abdul Kalam, studies at a Tamil medium government high school and learnt English by taking coaching classes for a month.